The Volusia County Council has rejected a proposed moratorium on development that would impede the progress of a fuel terminal in Ormond Beach. The vote was 5-2 against the moratorium, preventing a major stopping block for the developers.
The majority vote was formed by Councilmen Jake Johansson, Don Dempsey, Matt Reinhart, Danny Robins, and David Santiago. Chair Jeff Brower and Vice Chair Troy Kent were in the minority.
Public opposition to the facility being constructed by Belvedere Terminals stems from concerns over public health and safety. The location would have trucks shipping fuel in and out around the clock, in close proximity to places where food is handled and people live.
The primary reasoning given by the council members who voted against the moratorium was not an outright endorsement of the project, but rather a differing philosophy on how to keep it in check. Adopting the moratorium would've bought the county time to modify its own zoning laws, potentially allowing time to implement stronger regulations.
Belvedere Terminals has sued Volusia County in an effort to keep the project moving along, and stop the county from delaying things. The failure of the moratorium surprised many who observed its mass public support, but it falls in line with most instances of proposed building moratoriums in the area. The lobbying efforts of developers and their counsel has a history of mostly blocking such measures, as turned out to be the case here.